Craig Dewar is passionate, but he didn’t come off as the angry Kiwi that he looks like here
Presenter: Craig Dewar, who heads up community marketing for Microsoft Business Solutions
One to one engagement is key.
Microsoft community examples:
Xbox Live; Entered gaming market in 2000. Sony had shipped 20 million PlayStations. Xbox Live was built in from day one, and it drove the success of the product. 60 million units of all Xbox consoles, 17 million users on Live, 1.5 million users online. Community was key business strategy.
Channel 9: Developers are lifeblood of Microsoft. Developers were getting irked around 2000. Created a community and dialogue. Transparency, dialogue matter.
Microsoft Dynamics Community: community.dynamics.com – ERP, CRM software. 10000 people attended event. MSFT sells through partners so no direct relationship with end user of product. Wanted direct engagement. Knew end users cared about: Learning, Networking, Support, Feedback.
- Even if you build it, they may not come. You have to have the right value proposition. Awareness is issue. Discoverability is key.
- Critical mass is hard and will take longer than you think. 6 months after launching, less than 2,000 registered users. Not enough people to sustain dialogue. 1-10% of people will create/contribute to content. 10-15% will comment. The rest won’t do more than read it. 2,000 users wasn’t critical mass. Dewar spent an hour every day answering users’ questions. Motto: “no question will be unanswered”.
- Reach: Built Community Connection directly into the product.
- Relevance: Making sure businesspeople think of them as a place to ask questions
- Referral: build something in to make it easy for others to participate